Science Beliefs and Commitments

Because we know/understand that science...

  • curriculum, instruction, and assessment should be aligned with the state and national standards and best practices
  • is a constantly changing body of knowledge that can change direction at any time
  • is learned best when students can specify big ideas and don’t only list facts
  • provides a key tool for understanding or investigating more complex ideas and solving problems
  • instruction should relate to interests and life experiences of students, connect to societal or personal concerns that require scientific or technological knowledge
  • instruction should increase depth and sophistication over grade levels
  • disciplines (physical, life, earth, and engineering sciences) need to be instilled in students as a body of knowledge, and an evidence-based, model-building enterprise that continually extends, refines, and revises knowledge
  • learning is defined as the combination of both knowledge & practice, not separate content and process goals
  • has eight practices in which science students should be appropriately immersed. These are not a linear sequence:

o asking questions and defining problems

o developing and using models

o planning and carrying out investigations

o analyzing and interpreting data

o using mathematics, information and computer technology, and computational thinking

o constructing explanations and designing solutions

o engaging in argument for evidence

o obtaining, evaluating, and communicating information

  • has seven concepts that frame science work

o patterns

o cause and effect; mechanism and explanation

o scale, proportion, and quantity

o systems and system models

o energy and matter; flows, cycles and conservation

o structure and function

o stability and change

Trevor-Wilmot District Science Curriculum shall...

  • reflect the in-depth study of topics or content
  • increase the in-depth study of topics or content in each discipline and decrease cursory coverage of a lock step curriculum
  • create a common understanding of essential learning targets and responsible citizenship
  • be challenging, authentic, experiential, democratic, collaborative, sociable, reflective, constructivist, developmental, and expressive
  • include the content and concepts of cultural responsiveness, government, democracy, leadership, and commerce
  • examine the impact of race, gender, religion, and other diversities on historical events
  • examine various leadership structures, the effects of Imperialism, trade, and commerce on local, state, national and global levels as well as collective resistance to these structures
  • activities should engage students in inquiry and problem solving opportunities about significant human issues
  • focus on the impact and connectedness of real world issues to students’ lives and the global community
  • provide multiple points of view around a single topic or event
  • provide provocative content for discussion
  • include thoughtful participation through reading, writing, listening and speaking to convey a content literate community
  • encourage authentic exploration of topics and problem solving skills by fostering cross-curricular collaboration
  • engage students in critical reading and analysis, and assist students in understanding source reliability, positionality and bias
  • encourage active citizenship
  • encourage authentic discussion as a method of assessing and evaluating student learning
  • provide authentic and relevant learning opportunities
  • build upon students’ prior knowledge to increase students’ awareness of issues beyond their immediate experience
  • be global in nature and include multiple viewpoints in a safe environment
  • develop the social literacy of students by imbedding the historical, geographical political and economic understanding of the content into instruction
  • provide opportunities for participation in diverse groups in order to communicate knowledge, viewpoints and experiences through a variety of activities

Trevor-Wilmot District Teachers shall…

  • devote time to state standards and responsible citizenship
  • provide strategies and skills to determine meaning of words and phrases as used in history/social studies text
  • use multiple sources, including print and non-print, to engage readers in the construction of knowledge from particular cultural, political and social locations
  • model civic responsibility
  • empower students to engage in conversations and investigations that focus on multiple points of view
  • guide student learning of content knowledge in order to understand the role of power and authority
  • provide opportunities for students to research, have meaningful discussions, formulate questions, and manage bias and multiple viewpoints about significant human issues
  • provide opportunities to explore how current events link to the past, present, and future
  • activate students’ prior knowledge and cultural diversity to engage students
  • activate students’ prior knowledge to develop understanding of cultural diversity
  • establish student participation as an expectation and utilize participation as an assessment in discussion
  • create integrated and thematic units to promote democratic participation
  • teach students how to identify multiple points of view using multiple literary resources
  • create learning experiences that are collaborative and inquiry based
  • provide a variety of sources in order to help students learn the difference between primary and secondary sources, and point of view
  • provide collaborative, real-world, inquiry-based and problem solving activities
  • recognize authentic discussion as a form of assessment and model effective discussion techniques
  • foster an environment of respect for diversity and view cultural differences as assets
  • use multiple and authentic sources to engage students to develop a diverse an in-depth perspective
  • rely on discussions, conferences, observations, student writing, and other assessments to determine student learning

Trevor-Wilmot District Students shall…

  • be regularly involved in historical investigations with primary sources
  • determine meaning of words and phrases in social studies text
  • develop the necessary skills in order to think strategically and critically in order to form a global perspective
  • know the importance of gathering information to create deliberate and informed viewpoints as responsible citizens
  • know the importance of voting, rights , and responsibilities as citizens
  • develop an appreciation and respect for other cultures beyond their own
  • analyze how power and authority impact historical, current, and personal events
  • engage in research, meaningful discussions, formulating questions, and managing bias and multiple viewpoints about significant human issues
  • be able to provide and cite evidence to support their perspective regarding a link of events to the past, present, and future
  • be able to understand, accurately summarize, and interpret point of view in reading from various sources/texts
  • be active participants in their own learning
  • participate in diverse groups in order to communicate knowledge, viewpoints and experiences through a variety of activities
  • through their learning, extend their social, political, cultural and economic awareness
  • understand bias and point of view in order to critically read and analyze multiple sources
  • collaborate to engage in real-world, inquiry-based and problem solving activities in order to become active citizens
  • actively participate in authentic discussions, take ownership for their learning, and understand the value of focused discussions
  • participate in a classroom environment/culture that models various local, national and global communities